Miami Dolphins

Dolphins host all-conference defensive back with touching back story

Central Florida defensive back Shaquill Griffin goes through drills at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Central Florida defensive back Shaquill Griffin goes through drills at the NFL Scouting Combine. AP

Shaquill and Shaquem Griffin are a package deal. They’ve been that way since birth.

The twins from St. Petersburg together started a track club. They were high school football teammates.

They enrolled at Central Florida and won games for the Golden Knights together.

"We plan ahead so we know what's to come," Shaquill told ESPN in 2013. "By eighth grade, we knew we would never leave each other. We talk about having adjacent houses when we get older."

They look the same in every way but this: Shaquill has both hands; Shaquem has but one.

Shaquem Griffin lost his left hand at age 4 due to a rare prenatal condition.

It didn’t stop him from not just playing collegiate football, but dominating.

The Griffins’ fraternal partnership will take a hiatus for at least a year.

Shaquem, the star linebacker who was the AAC defensive player of the year, still has one more year at UCF, having redshirted as a freshman.

His older brother (by a minute) might not be far away, though. The Dolphins have interest in Shaquill, bringing the 6-foot defensive back in for a visit to team headquarters Tuesday.

Shaquill is a potential late-round pick for the Dolphins. He had 50 tackles and four interceptions as a senior, earning second-team all-conference honors.

Draft expert Lance Zierlein, writing on NFL.com, likened Shaquill Griffin to Packers cornerback LaDarius Gunter.

Zierlein’s take: “Griffin plays the game with an aggressive tilt both in coverage and in his run support. Griffin has good ball skills with a closing burst to challenge throws, but his anticipation is just average and he may not be able to play off of receivers and still be as effective with his ball production. Because he lacks long speed but is an effective tackler, he could be targeted by a defense favoring Cover-2 coverage.”

Adam H. Beasley: 305-376-3565, @AdamHBeasley

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